This article is a guest post, courtesy of Apex Waterproofing Inc. in Arlington, Virginia.
Home foundation repair is one of the biggest things so few of us are really mindful of. Who thinks about the foundation of their home failing? It’s a little bit like a sinkhole just opening up and swallowing you while you’re walking down the street. We all believe our foundation will be fine … until it’s not.
When an incident happens, the thought can be to just fix your home at whatever cost. Totally ignoring a lingering problem is a bad idea; so is just running around with a spigot full of money to fix problems you may not need to.
There are three important questions you should ask yourself first:
- Is home foundation repair something that is covered in one of my insurance policies?
- How deep am I going to need to go in order to ensure that this repair is effective?
- Is this repair something small enough that I could do it myself?
Of course these and so many more questions are likely swirling around your brain. Don’t fret, though: Here are 5 steps to remember when you’re thinking of repaving and making an earnest structural repair in your home.
1. Estimate: What is this whole enterprise going to cost?
There are tools you can use online and you should do that first, but the truth is that your home has its own specific set of challenges, so you will want to have someone out to see your space. It’s a good idea to get a couple of estimates if you can and you don’t want to pay anyone to come out to your home simply to accurately assess the damage. If the contractor you’re talking with won’t come out to assess the costs and give you an estimate before you give them any money, than they are not a company you want to be dealing with anyway.
2. Time Frame: How long with the renovation/repair project take?
Once you’ve settled on a team and a price then you want to know what the work will involve and how long it will take. If this is going to be a large scale project that you are having done you might need to make arrangements to accommodate this work. Will someone be able to stay around your home when this team is here? Because the chances are they may need access. If they don’t need access it may still be a good idea to have someone around just in case any decisions need to be made in real time.
3. Live With It: Is this a repair that you even need to have done straight away?
Home foundation repair is a pretty big deal so the chances are that you will need to handle this problem sooner rather than later. But if you can’t commit to this work being done or you can’t afford this unexpected repair right now then you may just have to live with it for a while.
4. Seals: Are the cracks in your pavement small enough that you could use some type of a temporary sealant on them for a while?
Calling in a couple of workers to seal up some cracks is something that can be done far quicker than a major overhaul and this sealant may be all that you need right now. It’s not an ideal fix but if it can tide you over for a bit until you’re ready to have to work done, that may make more sense.
5. Pavers or Slabs: How do you want the work done?
Once you have settled on a team and a price and you are ready to commit to the work then the only thing you really need to decide is how you want this work done. You may be able to select from laying down new pavement or taking and putting in slabs of concrete depending on where the structural repair needs to be in your home. You should speak with your contractor before the work begins so that you wind up with the repairs to your home done to your specifications.
Home structural repair is a tough thing. Especially when the work needs to be done, it usually happens at the worst time, when you have no time, and it often can’t wait as long as you’d like it to. Get your affairs in order and make sure that you know what it is you’re having done and make sure that you ask the right questions before you become embroiled in repair work that isn’t what you wanted anyway.
It’s also important to protect your investments, so if you’ve had your foundation or crawl space repaired, you may also want to consider basement or crawl space waterproofing to prevent any other damages from occurring.